Brandon Jennings Was Disrespected By JaVale McGee’s Garbage Time 3-Pointer

It’s MLB Opening Day (yesterday doesn’t count, and you know it) so that means six months of hearing about unwritten rules. But as we learned Sunday, even the NBA has unwritten rules that you may have only discovered now.

The Warriors were smoking the Wizards at home and there were only a few seconds left. Since the shot clock was about to expire, JaVale McGee launched a corner three-pointer to avoid a violation. Somehow, Brandon Jennings took this as an insult and shoved McGee mid-shot to earn a flagrant foul.

Why was McGee taking that shot wrong? Here’s Jennings to tell you:

“It was very disrespectful,” Jennings said. “Thank God he didn’t go to the rack, it probably would have been worse for him. But any time like that, I think you should let [the] clock run out. I think it was already disrespectful that they were trying to get Draymond a triple-double, Steph was out there with 40. So, I just felt it was disrespectful.

“I’m old school. Like I said, he better be glad he shot that 3 and didn’t go to the basket.”

“I’m old school,” says the guy who was so sad about someone shooting a meaningless three-pointer that he cheap-shotted him and ran to the other side of the court. It’s also pretty great that Old School Jennings felt disrespected by players on the other team putting up big numbers. “Steph had 40 points? Show some respect to my teammates.”

Isn’t allowing the shot clock to run out more disrespectful? Isn’t that a bigger slap in the face, since you’re no longer treating the other team like an equal and you’ve stopped competing because you feel bad for them? Isn’t pity worse than a meaningless three ball?

Perhaps the issue with this unwritten rule is that sometimes a shot is OK in that situation, but only a certain type of shot. Steve Kerr interpreted the rule that is not written:

“[The closing seconds were] kind of strange,” Kerr said. “I think JaVale should not have taken that 3. When you have a lead like that, you shouldn’t be shooting 3-pointers. I told him that. I think he understands that. I don’t have a problem taking a shot when there is a shot-clock differential. I never understood why a team would be offended if there is a shot-clock deferential. We dribble out the clock and take a turnover? I don’t think you should shoot a 3 either. I guess that [is] what Jennings was upset about. I was uncomfortable with the way it ended.”

So a three-pointer is bad, but a two-pointer is OK? The offending act lies somewhere inside that one-point differential in shot value? But Jennings essentially said he would have been more physical if McGee tried to go to the rim.

Or maybe it all would’ve been OK if Jennings chose a different way to express his anger?

“Brandon isn’t going to do anything,” Matt Barnes told ESPN. “But I understand where he’s coming from. I would just wrap somebody up in that situation, but it is what it is. He’s not going to do anything.”

So maybe the three-pointer is OK but the shove is not? A warm embrace was the way to go?

If you’re an NBA fan, keep this in mind when you’re making fun of baseball players who lose their minds over bat flips or bunting to break up no-hitters in one-run games.